No, talking heads — the Brexit vote does not mean a potential win for Donald. You need to think a little harder.
CNN’s David Gregory expounded on how Britain’s vote to exit the European Union shows the “potency” of Donald Trump’s message in the upcoming general election — and of course, he explained what Hillary supposedly needs to learn from it:
“This is another reminder of, I think, the potency of the Trump message. We’ve been focused on his missteps and self-inflicted wounds,” Gregory said. He hastened to add: “This wave he’s able to surf a little today gives him a political boost — a reminder of the kind of politics, the messaging, that populist angst that he brought in to the primary campaign. It may scare a lot of people, but there’s a lot of people who are going to embrace it.
“And I think Hillary Clinton needs to recognize that. I think she and her own response to this need to find a way to acknowledge what is coursing through British politics, and understand what the parallels are to America, and how to try to respond to that in a different way than Donald Trump is responding to it,” Gregory said.
The implication that she should tailor her positive message to Donald’s because of the Brexit vote is exactly the wrong lesson.
I can understand Donald getting it wrong; he gets so much wrong. But the media really should know better.
Andrea Mitchell and Chuck Todd compared the Brexit vote to a similar, angry groundswell in the United States, with Mitchell warning that a Donald win is possible.
But what they’re all not saying is that UK polling said all along that it would be a very close decision. U.S. polling, on the other hand, tells us again and again that most people reject Donald’s divisive message.
By contrast, it appears there was no gender gap in Brexit polling — that is, men and women voted for either position in roughly the same proportions. And about 14% of British voters are non-white, compared to around 30% of American voters. (As you may have noticed, Donald has thoroughly alienated minorities.)
That support is why Hillary continues to show a solid lead over Donald.
In yet another dissimilarity, Brexit support was spread across party lines, among and between supporters of the Conservatives, Labour, and other parties. But a presidential election here is inherently a partisan contest.
The Brexit vote has rocked global financial markets. Notably, The Economist’s global forecasting service has rated a Trump presidency as a greater global risk than a post-Brexit eurozone breakup.
So no, the last thing our Democratic nominee needs to do is embrace the politics of fear and hate-mongering. Hillary is putting forward an inspiring vision of change for a diverse world — she is not competing with a bigot over who can conjure the scariest bogeyman.
(Polling data supplied by Anthony Reed of Benchmark Politics.)